Sunday, February 6, 2011

Please feel free to ignore the following post.....

Ok here we go with another post that I will probably regret in the morning. I have done soooooo soooooo many of those, it is like a train crash. I know I shouldnt but I just can't help myself. I seem to be drawn to putting myself in the firing line! It's like an itch that needs scratching, you scratch it and relief comes, but the scratching can make it sore. I itch and itch and itch and the blogging is the release. But I never seem to be able to delete it and not press the send button.! Maybe one day I will learn..

As many of you know I am on one of my creative frenzies at the moment (nice way of putting it). I came back from LA on a real high. My art was really, really well recieved. I know quite a few peoples opinions of me changed when they saw my "real" art. It was a nice feeling to start with, people wanting to befriend me on f/b, twitter, blog etc. The many congratulations on my stamp release etc. And  I know I shouldn't really say it but I really struggle with it. I am getting a lot better, because I can own it for a couple of days now, before Imposter Syndrome comes crashing in. Then all hell breaks loose. My high, of feeling good, turns into a massive high of anxiety, self doubt and panic, which throws my world upside down. And that is where I am residing at the moment. And as with everything in life there are positives and negatives.

Everyone seems to focus on the plus's and the negatives don't enter their thoughts. And why should they?  It all sounds good, doesn't it? I seem to have tons of energy, I am at my most creative and productive,I need little or no sleep, no food, and my own company is the best in the world. Yayy way to go....or so it seems.

 Eighteen months ago I was diagnosed with something that has been suspected for most of my life...Rapid Cycling Bi-Polar. Not for me the depressive stages though, oh no I veer from normal to high to very high ( not a shock eh? ) . I am like a bouncing ball, or a Duracell rabbit full of Red Bull. I used to be really embarassed about the way I was and try and hide it from everyone, in case they thought I was stark raving mad or off my head on drugs, but I am slowly coming to terms with it. I have learnt that a lot of highly creative people are in fact the same as me. We don't "suffer" from the disorder, we just live our lives with it as a constant companion.! I have had many people comment how nice it is for me to be able to have the time to make all this art. But to be honest, I don't have the time, and its only when the batteries start to wear themselves out that I will be able to come down, rest and sleep. It is hard work being so awake and productive whilst being so exhausted. I can't concentrate on anything for long, so anything "businessy is out of the question.  I am doing 85 things at once, jumping from one thing to another right in the middle. My brain is on a mission and won't give up. And yet I still have a business to run, important decisions to make, a meeting tomorrow with the bank manager, paperwork, paperwork and more paperwork, that is impossible to buckle down to. It's not that much fun now is it.?

Here are many of the symptons whilst in the manic phase

•feeling very happy, elated or euphoric (overjoyed) ... check

•talking very quickly ... check

•feeling full of energy  ... check

•feeling full of great new ideas and having important plans ...check

•being easily distracted ... check

•being easily irritated or agitated ... check

•being delusional, having hallucinations and disturbed or illogical thinking ... normal for me

•not feeling like sleeping ... check

•not eating ... check

•doing pleasurable things that often have disastrous consequences, such as spending large sums of money on expensive and sometimes unaffordable items. ... uncheck....due to locking oneself in bedroom and being skint...

Sound familiar. Luckily I can manage without going over the top, and I do this by doing my art. But I am always a little afraid of what comes out. Confused...?? Well take a look at these two pages.

When I am in the midst of creating, I seem to be on auto pilot. I have no set intentions of what I am going to produce, I just put my head down and go. I retreat from the world into my bedroom, my safe haven, and start my stff. But first the room has to cleaned within an inch of it's life. Every cupboard, every drawer, every storage box, is taken out, resorted and replaced. I don't have OCD I have CDO because it's in alphabetical order.!!!!! When it's all to my satisfaction then I can relax. By "relax" I mean my anxieties, not my mind and body lol. It is a form of self harm. Now don't get me wrong, thankfully I do not hurt myself physically. But I do punish myself, however unintentional. Not sleeping, withdrawing from the world, not eating,not looking after yourself at all,  is not exactly good for you. I go very into myself and all that is important is the art. I don't want attention, or sympathy, or fixing....I just need accepting that this is the way I am. I have the same genetics as most of you, but my brain has always been wired that little bit differently. I am really writing this post for me, so that when my manicness is calming down I will be able to come back, read and try to understand how I felt at this moment.

I know I am not alone in my dealings with it, but at times like this it sure feels like it. Who else is blogging at 3.30 am, listening to an audio book and journaling all at the same time, whislt knowing that, in reality, when the Bank Manager sees you haven't prepared the P&l, the cash flow, or the figures you will be up s**t creek without a frikkin paddle.?

Sorry if I have ranted on, but rest assured, normal service will resume as soon possible..hopefully before the Bank Manager gets to me..!!!!

Enjoy your sleep xx


Davielle (aka, Princess Magpie) said...

I just left a comment and e-blogger wouldn't let it post. I hate when that happens. So the bottom line is this: I recognize and relate to all that you said. I just want to say that I believe you ARE a beautiful human being, and your art IS amazing. Trust me, as the daughter of a bi-polar mother, who often felt like I just didn't fit in anywhere, I think I 'get' where you're at. Now get to your P and L, and try to rest a teensy bit. Hugs - Davielle

Davielle aka Princess Magpie said...

trying one more time. e-blogger can kiss my behind if it won't let me comment this time! so anyway, i do relate to what you posted, and i do recognize where you're at. it does make my gut clench a bit when i read that you're not sleeping, that you're 'in a phase', cuz i lived with a lot of that (mom was bi-polar, like i told you at CHA). i wish for you some rest - and a P and L that will knock the socks off your bank manager. (so this is mostly not what I wrote the first 2 tries, but ...). you ARE a beautiful person, and your art IS amazing. Believe believe believe it all ... ~ Davielle

voodoo vixen said...

I would imagine that a lot of artists have similar moments, which is probably where the 'art' part comes from and is a way of expressing all that pent up energy and emotion. I cannot say I know how you feel as I don't suffer in the same way - can always sleep and catnap and then wish I had spent the time doing something productive!! Your pieces look fab, not what I would want on my wall, but from an artistic perspective they are indeed fabulous and very expressive. Hope you manage to create a calm place and the bank manager is not too hard on you! :)

JJ Sobey said...

I really like your art. I wish I could let go of my fear of art (and yes, I would call it fear), and just create. Sometimes, I think it's 'better out than in'. A form of therapy.

Thank you for sharing where you are at, at this moment.

Craphty said...

You are respected for who you are by many. A talented artist, patient teacher and a very understanding person. Don't ever change Dyan or you would not be you. x C

flutterbycrafter said...

You are such a creative person, because of the way and who you are, please try to embrace it, you are loved and admired, world wide, you are free to handle this however you want to, no apologies, jut be yourself, big hugs xxx

Luna Art said...

Sharing so honestly takes a lot of courage and strength.I don't claim to know anything about this condition, but from all you have said I think it is amazing how much you have achieved with your art, while living with this condition. Your art, shop, own design stamps and paints, creating for TH at CHA. What I am trying to say is, we all have the negatives to live with, the things that pull us down and make us doubt ourselves, but ask your self this...would you be this creative and have achieved this much if it wasn't for your condition? Would you have had the highs that made you so creative, the energy to do everything you do, or would you be lagging behind, getting frustrated with yourself because you didn't have the time, energy or inclination to push yourself further? The negatives are hard to live with but the whole package is you and makes you who you are! You are an inspiration to many people and your art is fantastic! I do hope you get some sleep soon. I have waffled on and it might not make sense, so my apologies!

Miss Marple said...

Hey, who wrote a few weeks ago a few lines that impressed me so much???...It was you and it said not to regret too...So do not regret writing this post, it is you! People stop by here to read about you and your art.
I hope that this low phase passes by quickly, you get some good rest, the bank manager is satisfied and you will create your behind off! - Irma

Artyjen said...

This period will do know that I can late husband was never diagnosed with bi-polar but I swear he suffered with something very much like it at times...I know that you will reach the source of the creek and hopefully still have that paddle in your hand! Your fabulous art will make sure of it :)
xoxo Sioux

lisa_crofts said...

I have just discovered your art and I love it. You are one brave lady sharing so much about yourself I hope everything goes well with the bank manager.

olive said...

Dy... and are we bothered? no.. you are you and we take you as we find you. You understand what you have and live with it, its your passion & commitment that make us follow in your wake. Suffering from depression myself (not on your level) I hear what you are saying, but I love who you are, warts and all!!!!! It seems most creative genius's have some sort of 'creating condition'.... you are in great company. Treat yourself kindly. Hugs Olive xxxx

RH said...

I only discovered your art after your stamps were posted on the ranger site but I was immediately grabbed by it. You've inspired me to try my hand at art journaling.

I can only imagine what you are feeling but please don't let it stop you. It makes you who you are. The good and the not so good.

Thank you for sharing and hope you get some sleep soon :P

Darcy Marshall said...

I can check all but the energy and the hallucinations...and I blogged at about 3.20 this morning.I rarely get ore than 2-3 hrs sleep a night. At least I don't have a job to go to, I have no idea how you do it all, but I am in awe that you do. Big hugs

ellen vargo designs said...

Don't regret posting all this - you needed to vent it out and I'm betting it will help many people who are living in similar circumstances who may not have been diagnosed yet. Your art is truly inspiring to me, and I wish I could just "let go" and create without over-thinking everything. Everyone has challenges to overcome, and SO many wonderful things are happening in your life - just keep being *YOU*... oh... and try to get some sleep... everything looks better after a good sleep. Thanks for sharing your personal story - takes courage to put all your "junk" out there for the world. No judgement on this end... I hope this comment posts... I always have trouble with your site... fingers crossed.

Ann said...

I love you for who you are Dyan. Axx

Clare with paint in her hair said...

Big hugs, your usual crew are here for you now and will be here for you when you come down


georgina said...

Well, this is so the Dyan we know and love,you know who and what you are and you accept it as part of you and i do believe this is what makes you the great talent you are.The people who are around you all the time obviously know what to look for and are a great safety net for you,as is your blogging so go with it girl and be all you want to be, luv and hugs Georginaxxx

Angela Weimer said...

Dyan, I admire your strengh to be able to speak your mind and post freely. That in itself is a healing process. you have so much on your plate its no wonder your mind will not shut off. I would like to say it goes away but I do not think it does. There are always problems, doubt, stress, thoughts etc. Having a store in itself is a huge stressful thing.I know. There is always so much to do and worry to be had. there will always be the good people and the bad. There will be many who want to befriend you but fewer who stand by you in the end. You are amazngly talented and You will find a way through as you are very strong(whether you believe it or not).Your art will help you, It's an expression of you at any given moment in time and you have a way of being able to channel your emotions into amazing things. When I was a teen you should have seen the drawings I did. pretty gory but it was my way of dealing with things going on. My parents even sent me to several phsychiatrists thinking there was something wrong with me. But in time I moved on. Not sleeping has become part of the norm for me and my sleeping time is normally spent writing. you have inspired me to do that. You have also inspired me to not be so afraid. You are an amazing woman and mother. I know I talk in circles a bit. Sorry for that. I hope you get a bit of sleep and feel better. I still enjoy reading your posts good , bad or indifferent. Angela

Anonymous said...

Shirley Bassey

I am what I am
I am my own special creation
So come take a look
Give me the hook or the ovation
It's my world that I want to
have a little pride in
My world and it's not a
place I have to hide in
Life's not worth a damn till you can say
Hey world I am what I am
I am what I am
I don't want praise
I don't want pity
I bang my own drum
Some think it's noise
I think it's pretty
And so what if I love each
feather and each spangle
Why not try and see things
from a different angle
Your life is a sham till you can say
Hey world I am what I am

I am what I am
And what I am needs no excuses
I deal my own deck
Sometimes the ace
Sometimes the deuces
It's my life and there's no
return and no deposit
One life, so it's time to
open up your closet
Life's not worth a damn till you can say
Hey world I am what I am


Steph said...

I don't know what to say other than I find your art work totally amazing and inspiring. Your products are brilliant, I love them!!!

I wish I could make all the neagativity go away.

I saw a quote recently that said, life's problems wouldn't be called hurdles if you weren't supposed to be able to get over them.

I guess what I am saying is I am sure everything will sort itself out.

Maybe you should try doing an altered art P&L for your bank manager!

thekathrynwheel said...

Hey, you are what you are and we all love ya, mwah mwah xx Most of us would give our back teeth for just an ounce of your creative energy. Don't know how you cope without sleep though - if I don't get my eith hours I turn into an ogre LOL! Well done for being so refreshingly honest and putting yourself out there. We all admire you for it.
IS it art journaling on Sunday? Can I come? Does that count as booking myslef in?!! Byeeee x

thekathrynwheel said...

P.S. If the bank manager comes down all heavy on you, just imagine him sitting on the loo with his trousers round his ankles and then he won't seem as scary hahahahahah :-))

Unknown said...

“Never regret. If it's good, it's wonderful. If it's bad, it's experience.”
-Victoria Holt



Sandra Hall said...

You might doubt yourself at times, but never doubt this. YOU ARE LOVED FOR WHO YOU ARE! :) x x x

Lisa said...

To be honest Dyan, I don't think you appreciate how much you have changed me personally. Before I met you, I was scared to make a crafting mistake, I worried people hated my stuff and I never experimented. Now I can't stop, and that is all down to you. You gave me confidence to try and if I do make a mistake - so friggin what?!! You are the most talented woman I know and you are an inspiration to me. The rest of the stuff, well that just makes you you!
Please don't ever change!

Lisa said...

Forgot to say, just in case, I can do lots of business type crap - if you need me, let me know (I may not be able to do all the creative stuff but boring stuff I can do!)

Siobhan Brignull said...

CDO ... LOL... . thankfully you always seem to have your sense of humour on full.
But it must be so hard, I suffer from the D word sometimes but am learning to recognise the symptoms and work hard to kick myself out of it as I cant take time off work (LOL I am an account manager in a bank LOL) and seem to have got it under some sort of control at the moment.
DOnt think I am OCD but if I was it would defn be CDO as well, like to be organised with all my arty stuff, dont like to stop when I start something, which is again Im having to learn to stop as that can affect my work.
We all struggle everyday in different ways, I just learnt someone I work with is Alcohol dependant, had no idea, her OH has MS, am so sad for her struggles and especially guilty when ive whinged about her, wot Im tryin to say is most people dont go past the facade we present to the world, your true friends however know the real you. sned you lots of hugs and wishing you a great nights sleep...xx

Unknown said...

Sending huge hugs to one very special, talented, beautiful, artistic, expressive, giving, incredible, inspirational and so very honest lady - I swear i would not be the person I am today without knowing and spending time with you. Your classes are amazing (hoping i get my license back soon to cme again) and I just LOVE spending time with you. You encouraged me and gave me belief in myself I hope I give a teensy bit back to ease your day x

Mo said...

My heart goes out to you. My 33 year-old bipolar daughter lives with me and I don't even need your description to know how your life is at this moment. DON'T stop your art. Besides being awesome,it's such a positive way to deal with what your brain is up to.What an enormous accomplishment that you traveled to CHA and back and had sucessful product there. I love your stamps. My local scrapbook store owner loved your Ranger class. As for writing the post - GOOD for you! Understanding bipolar is difficult at best for people without the disorder. My daughter has said it's also impossible to hide. Better to be open. She suggests reading Carrie Fisher's last 2 books (Carrie is severely bipolar and has tried to educate via her novels). They're very funny and irreverent. Not sleeping is one of your worst enemies.I hope you get some rest real soon. I'm here on the sidelines cheering you on.

Kat Baker said...

Dyan, I met you at CHA with my friend, Davielle. You are my favorite person that I met at CHA this year. I really love your art and so wish I could take your classes.
Can't help but relate to your post. Everyone does life their own way. What's "normal"? I say, "whatever works". I've learned that sometimes all I can do is put one foot in front of the other and try not to take it all so seriously. Hang in there friend.

Kaz said...

Well I'm a bit late with my comment, but I'm sending you a hug if you just slow down a minute it wont miss you!
I have no words of wisdom or insight, but I just want to say you inspire me - and if it's been done while you're hyper, then I will appreciate it all the more.
Never call yourself an imposter, but I understand that, you are very good at what you do. If you weren't, you wouldn't be in demand like you are.
Now next time you are racing at full speed, could you just bottle up a little of the energy and e-mail it to me? I'll be your friend forever!!!

Kirsten Alicia said...

Dyan, I have no words for you. Everyone else has been so eloquent, as have you. All I can do is say I think you're an amazing woman & a terrific artist & I hope I can tell you that in person one day. Sending you huge cyber hugs.

Steven said...

~ If you see a friend without a smile; give him one of yours. ~
Take care!

gayle said...

Awesome, amazing post :) love the honesty of ALL your posts and applaud it! :)
I admire your feisty spirit and your beautiful artwork, long may both continue :) xx

Lynda Howells said...

My heart goes out to you my wonderful blogging friend. All that can be said has been said by all these amazing bloggers. I am an artist and a Counsellor and l also am some one that has suffered with depression for 54 of my 58 years!xx if l can help, just askxxlynda
hope this is accepted as normally my responses are always returnedxx

Rhayne said...

Kudos to you for getting this out. I, for one, accept everything about you that you share with us on your blog. Journaling in this way is often therapeutic so here's to hoping you're feeling better about where you are right now. You are so brave to open up to the public the way you do.

Kathi said...

Those pages are absolutely amazing. Totally, stunningly beautiful. In truth, there is beauty. In beauty, there is art.

I finally understand why people "art journal".

Thanks for sharing your thoughts and your art.

Quote of the Century

"You are an extraordinary woman.

How can you expect anything ordinary to happen to you"

Louisa May Alcott